WASHINGTON,D.C.-The Jets knew what was at stake in what was their biggest game of this season and they left it all on the ice in a 5-3 heartbreaker loss to the Capitals.
The Capitals clinched the Southeast division title and the number three seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Things didn’t go as planned for the Jets as early in the day during what would be pre-game nap time the hotel they were at decided to conduct fire drills for forty minutes. Hotel staff insisted that these drills were planned for months before this huge game was known about.
Ondrej Pavelec was once again stellar with 37 saves in the loss.
Capitals goalie Braden Holtby made 24 saves for the win.
The Caps jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first with goals from Matt Hendricks his 5th and Jason Chimera his 3rd.
The Jets thought they had a couple of goals but one was saved by John Erskine and the other went for review and was determined not enough evidence it crossed the line.
In the second, Evander Kane got Winnipeg on the board with his 17th a power play goal.
Blake Wheeler tied things up with his 18th off a nifty pass by Nik Antropov who was back in the line up after missing eight games with an injury.
Defensive break downs have haunted the Jets all year and 37 seconds after they tied the score Nicklas Backstrom scored his 8th to give Washington a 3-2 lead.
Mathieu Perreault got his 6th to restore Washington’s two goal lead.
In the third period, the Jets got a spark when Antropov ripped a shot top shelf for his 6th to make it 4-3 Capitals.
Ovechkin got his 31st into an empty net to seal the deal and give Washington a 5-3 win.
The Jets power play went one out of four in the game and couldn’t generate many good chances.
Winnipeg can look back to back to back home losses to Washington in march when they were up by nine points in the standings and could have buried the then slumping Capitals,this was a turning point for both teams as the Caps went on a tear and the Jets had a speed bump that could be the reason they miss the playoffs.
Jets close out the season at home against the Montreal Canadians on Thursday night.
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